Superman Group Editor Eddie Berganza announced some new additions to the Superman family of books, all falling under the unofficial designation "Super Storm," at a panel Friday afternoon at WizardWorld Chicago.
In addition to the changes linked to the new creative teams on the ongoing titles, there was a focus on new titles like "The Question," "Vigilante" and mini-series focusing on Superman's archenemy.
The starting point for this new phase in Superman's life will be the "Lex Luthor: Man of Steel" mini-series, written by Brian Azzarello and illustrated by Lee Bermejo. DC Editor-in-Chief Dan Didio explained the book as "Brian's twisted take on 'what if Superman was the bad guy?' This is seeing the world through Lex Luthor's eyes and why he is in the right."
Both "The Question" and "Vigilante" will examine how crime operates in Metropolis under the watch of Superman. Didio explained that "The Question and Vigilante are identifying the types of crime that Superman doesn't identify. ... the flip side of 'Gotham Central.'"
"The Question" will be written by Rick Veitch with art by Tommy Lee Edwards and will see the character face street level crime in Metropolis. The new "Vigilante" will be illustrated by Wildstorm artist Carlos D'Anda and will be written by 'StormWatch' scribe Micah Ian Wright. It will explore the wrongs committed by corporate entities, like LexCorp.
DC also took the opportunity to expand on the previously announced creative teams for the ongoing Superman titles. Joining writer Greg Rucka on "Adventures of Superman" will be the current "Inhumans" art team of Matt Clark and Nelson DeCastro. Penciller Ivan Reis and inker Mark Campos will work with Chuck Austen on "Action Comics" and "Superman" will be created by the team of Brian Azzarello and Jim Lee.
Responding to concerns about the interconnectedness of the titles, which divided fans in the panel audience, Didio said that the books will be linked thematically, but each book will have it's own vision: "On top of that, we want to build that world out," Didio said, referring to the new titles.
Berganza expanded by saying "If you read them all you'll get something out of that. If you only read the one you like, then you'll get something out of that."
Rucka said that his "Adventures" will feature the "serious stuff." He will explore Clark's new post on the crime beat. "He'll be working late at night until six or seven in the morning ... cramped in a bullpen with other smelly crime writers and they chase police cars. Contrast that with the fact that Lois is covering the president."
Concerning "Action Comics," Austen said, "I want to take Superman away from his godlike status and make him ... like us. Not always have things go his way. Make it a little more down to earth." Austen also gave some clues as to plot. "Because Lois is covering the President, Lois isn't always there for Clark, so he starts going over to Lana [Lang]'s house to vent his feelings a bit."
Editor Will Dennis hinted that Superman will also be facing many new villains and one familiar one that elicited excitement from the crowd: Gog, of "Kingdom Come" fame.
As the panel wound down, one attendee asked how the writers intend to make the impervious Superman a more interesting character "since he can't be hurt," Brian Azzarello responded: "We're gonna hurt Superman."